Every year 800,000 people in America die of stroke, 100,000 of them being children. In 2012, the first successful clinical trial for preventing a stroke was conducted by University of Health Network (UHN). A team lead by Dr. Michael Hill were originally studying why repairing an aneurysm lead to finding more damage in the brain, such as strokes.
Dr. Hill completed his undergraduate at McGill University. He went on to his MD at University of Ottawa, receiving his FRCPC (Internal Medicine) in 1997. Then Dr.Hill continued in his specialty of neurology in 1999 at the University of Toronto. In 2003, he began his director position of the Stroke Unit at the Foothills Medical Center, Calgary Health Region.
The clinical trials purpose was to decrease the amount of brain damage after surgery. Over 90% of patents treated for aneurysm have an ischemic stroke that can be life threatening. Dr. Michael and his team began research and gave their participants a one of two drugs, Tat-NR2B9c or placebo. Tat-NR2B9c drug was found to have all 100% outcomes be positive. Whereas, Placebo has 68% positive outcomes.
These results were unexpected, considering every drug that has been made to prevent neurological damage had failed. This new drug would not only save more and more people’s lives, but begin the possibilities for mapping when and where a stroke may occur. Before Tat-NR2B9c, the T-PA stroke therapy was the only one actually approved for reducing arteries blockage in the brain. The team of researches are still working on improvements and getting wide approved on the new drug.
The negatives of this drug, Tat-NR2B9c is the side effects are rather drastic. Brain bleeding is a major side effect that is more harmful than good. Although, the more research being done is continuing to improve, and the success of this drug is just beginning.
The positive possibilities are continuing to prosper. Dr. Tymianski is a member of the team and he states,”The benefits of this can be explored, not only for stroke but for other conditions such as vascular dementia.” The hope and research seems endless and exciting to this team. “There is now proof that there is a neuroprotectant that reduce brain damage in the brain caused by reduce blood flow.”